50 shades of love

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Okay recently I was looking at a fellow bloggers blog (orlamcdermott13) and she had a list of 10 things that made her happy. I decided we should both challenge ourselves to think of FIFTY things we love AND time ourselves doing so. I challenge anyone else to try this too!

9:18 AM

1. My apartment in the North End.

2. How close I am to everything, walking distance.

3. That I am able to get up early and go for a run.

4. That I have the choices to eat healthy & workout daily

5. My comfy bed

6. My colorful fitness apparel

7. My desire to learn

8. My work ethic

9. The friendships I have

10. R&B Music

11. Rap Music

12. My ability to remember lyrics

13. Dancing

14. Watching good dancers dance

15. Valentines Day (favorite holiday)

16. summertime

17. Getting my nails done

18. Dunkin Donuts iced coffee after a long run or the beginning of a long shift

19. being tan

20. Meeting new people

21. Having great conversation with strangers

22. Making inside jokes with new friends

23. Complimenting people

24. Overhearing compliments that you werent supposed to hear

25. New makeup

26. Taking a aromatic bubble bath with a good book

27. reading a good book

28. Forgetting about my cellphone

29. When people reach out and tell me I inspire them

30. Making someones day

31. Working in the restaurant

32. Spicy Food

33. soup

34. Being a Russian Mexican

35. Mexican food

37. Cooking

38. Meal planning

39. little kids

40. Coloring

41. Asking kids questions

42. Back massages

43. Cuddling

44. Watching a new movie in the living room with candles.. no phone no computer

45. having friends over for family dinners

46. Listening to music on the roof and dancing around the city skyline

47. being by the ocean

48. Sand in the feet listening to the waves and smelling the breeze

49. Concerts

50. Love loving

9:26 AM

This was fun! I think that it became much easier. I probably could’ve done more too. I think this is a great activity to make you think about how much you really do love and after, taking a look at what pops into your head can help you decide what your priorities are.

Racism

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I am white, I am not black. I do not know what it is like to be black and I would never overstep my boundaries to say I truly know what it is like to experience racism to an extent that people of color have to face. Would I say I am privileged? Yes. Being white is a privilege in America. Do I believe people are still racist? Yes. Do I know how to make change? No.

I honestly get a headache with the topic of racism, especially most recently with the accounts of police officers. I do not know how to help and I do not know what to speak about because like I said, I don’t know what it is like and I do not understand it. I think some people that are white are a little afraid to admit that they just don’t understand it. In a room full of black and white people I will not feel more akin to the white people than to black. In fact, I would not say that at all. To me when I see black skin. I see culture. I see a story that I want to learn. I see a clothing style. I see hair choices. I see beauty. I see individuality. Same thing when I see white people. I see white skin. I see culture. I see a story that I want to learn, etc.

I think my problem with racism is the uncomfortable feeling I get talking about it because I do not want to say something wrong or offend anyone.

There needs to be something done where there isn’t an uncomfortable barrier about discussing racism between people who are not racist.

Mind and Body

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According to my research, it seems as though people who complain more have a weaker immune system. My research has been conducted over 2 years with an observational, non-intrusive, approach.

The mind and the body are more connected than people think. It is not often that people look within themselves to see where an issue may be starting. I find that when people are making a conscious effort to be positive, their health is substantially better. People who feel bad for themselves and complain often are the people who are constantly sick with colds, headaches, and other pains and discomforts. Being positive is not the cure-all and I am not claiming to say that positive people never get sick but there is an increase in health with a positive mindset.

Your body is listening to your mind. Complaining creates stress in your mind which creates stress within the body. If we think of a more dramatic example, we hear of people getting ulcers from stress often. Usually this type of stress is immense and traumatic in some cases, but the same thing can happen on a small scale as well.

Do your body a favor and start paying more attention to your mind. Next time you start complaining figure out a way to turn your attitude around and take a minute to relax. We sometimes forget what relaxation feels like because of the hustle and bustle of society. Just take a few minutes to stop thinking about our responsibilities, our shortcomings, our problems, and just acknowledge your existence.

I hope you find that with a calm mind comes a healthy body.

#bostonstrong

Fitness, Insta-story

 

Saturday night I was tempted to go for a run. I left my apartment. It was about eight o’clock so the streets were filled with couples and families enjoying the first beautiful 65 degree temperature. I never run for more than 15 minutes. I have never been a runner even when I played sports. But something about this run was invigorating and motivating. I did not want to stop. Fifteen minutes went by. Twenty. Thirty. There were people all around and it was empowering. I felt strength in the city and that is what kept me going.

I have a strong sense of community in Boston. I love Boston and I like to think I represent for Boston. While I ran I knew people were not cheering me on and I wasn’t doing anything special. It was just a simple run but seeing the tourists and pedestrians gave me fire to keep going. They didn’t know that I hated running or that I usually cant run for more than a mile. What they saw was a friendly runner in Boston. I felt that I was representing our city. The city that doesn’t give up. The city that runs together.DSC_4126.JPG

This isn’t a post about my personal accomplishment but a post about the power of Boston. How often could you say that the city you live in is what motivated you to push yourself to keep going, to try harder, to not give up? In my small town and towns surrounding I heard almost everyday that people wanted to get away, to move to somewhere “better”. You do not hear that in Boston. You can not do better than Boston. Boston has the strongest sense of community I have ever felt. A year ago today changed my life as it had for many others in much more ways. But we came together. We didn’t give up. We were not defeated. We were, and we are, as a community, Boston Strong.

You can’t compare the moon to the stars. Both are beautiful. You can’t let others change your opinion of yourself. Some stars shine brighter than others but the sky isn’t just lit by one. Always shine as bright as you can because someone, somewhere is noticing you!

I know I am sexy. I know I am beautiful. I have a beautiful heart that is pure. I love with all I have and I always find the good in the bad. I have a great sense of humor. It is clear to me when I am alone that this is all true. But once you go into the world with millions of others who seem to be more sexy, more beautiful, more pure, more fun… you begin to get down on yourself. I made this quote up after I had been looking in the mirror at myself and was feeling super confident. Just me. No one to compare myself to. Don’t compare yourself to others. Love yourself for your best qualities and appreciate others best qualities as well. Everyone is beautiful in their own way and if you let your insecurities get in the way of how you embrace yourself and others, you are in serious trouble. 

You can’t compa…

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Happiness

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Earlier today I was talking with my best friend.I can see she is stressed out. She is making a big transition from college to “real life” in just a few short weeks. That is a hard thing to have to face! She even recently went through her first real relationship with a guy who turned out to be an apple with a worm in it. A red apple. I don’t like red apples, for the record. 

Anyway I asked her if she was happy and her response was that she was stressed but yeah she was happy but why, she asked. I said happiness is weird. It changes all the time. She tried to get it out of me what point i was trying to make but I couldn’t really figure it out. I then read an amazing blog by one of my friends. (dsutt94.wordpress.com/2014/04/02/guest-post-the-danger-in-being-content/). I had my friend read this post as well and in text she responded,

“I agree that being happy is weird.. like i feel like i am supposed to be happy because i have a great life compared to others and i would feel bad if i said no i wasn’t happy with my life. I am not a kid in Detroit addicted to drugs and looking for their next meal.. I got groceries and i was complaining how I forgot to get milk and an avocado! and I am f***ing sitting in a building on the 14th floor drinking coffee in front of a mac in Boston.. That is so cool and such an experience that most people do not ever get to have and would love to!” 

I then asked her, what if you dont compare yourself to other people, are you happy?

“no,” she said.

 

The word happiness drives me crazy. The concept, even more so. I don’t believe in traditional definitions for words such as this one. Being a server in a restaurant I serve people who look miserable, who look content, who look “happy” all day. Some people could be having a good day, a bad day, a bad year, a good year. Jeez, they could be clinically depressed or they could be bipolar for all I really know. The truth is I can’t measure someones happiness. No one can measure anyone’s happiness. The only person that can is yourself. The way you measure your own happiness is how you look at the meaning of happiness. 

 

From having this conversation with my friend I realized a few things. Happiness, first of all, should not be a comparison to other people. A lot of times my dad would tell me when I was upset, “there are people that are going through much worse, Leanna”. But does that really, internally make anyone change the way I feel or just as my friend said it, just make you feel bad that you aren’t happy. You can compare yourself to anyone or anything. You can compare yourself to that Detroit boy but you could also compare yourself to Kim Kardashian and fall into a deep depression because you didn’t get famous from basically doing absolutely nothing. Comparisons are what we use to trick ourselves into thinking we are happy, or that we should be happy. 

Another point is that happiness shouldn’t be defined by the things you own or what you have. I can of course believe that if I had every pair of Nike shoes in every color with matching pants and tops that I would achieve ultimate happiness and be forever happy but in reality it wouldn’t. 

If getting everything you wanted and going wherever you wanted (which ultimately comes from having a lot of money which comes from working) people like Paris Hilton or Lindsay Lohan wouldn’t being doing lines of coke almost daily. Happiness I can guarantee anyone, will not be achieved through drugs.

Drugs, comparisons, material items, “dream jobs”… they are all just factors of falsely advertised happiness.

Real happiness, in my opinion, is internal. It is just being the best person I can be, everyday. Having good intentions and making good choices that will benefit me. Making memories and taking risks I can grow from. Learning from others and learning from myself. Doing and saying things that I am afraid to. Being able to say that for every person I pass on the street, talk to, or have a relationship with I try to leave a positive impact on. That is why I believe I am happy.

I have days where I feel sad and angry and have a “why me,” attitude, and those who truly know what I am going through always ask me how I am not like that all the time. But it doesn’t matter about the things I cannot control. I control myself and I make myself the best I can be. Even when I do feel discouraged I have a burning flame inside of me that says I will never be conquered by my own self because I am a great person and I deserve to be the best, most happy version of myself.